Photos MAY BE temporarily down due to photobucket probems!! SORRY

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

gluten free chocolate muffins (easy!)

really moist and delicious!!!

found here 
Triple Chocolate Chunk Muffin Knock-Offs of Whole Food’s 6 Dollar per 4 Chocolate Chunk VitaTop Muffins
1 3/4 c oats (I used Bob's gluten free oats)
  •  3 egg whites
  •  3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt (or regular plain low fat yogurt)
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar (or 1-1/2 Tbsp. vinegar)
  • 1-1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1-1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1 cup sugar substitute (like Splenda granular) OR 1/4 cup + 2 tbs stevia OR (I used 3/4 cup sugar)
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (or use white chocolate or peanut butter chips!)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 (12-cup) muffin pans with foil cupcake liners, or spray muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
In a blender, (or food processor), mix all of the ingredients together, except for the chocolate chips. Blend until oats are ground and mixture is smooth.
Place mixture in a bowl and gently stir in 1/2 of the chocolate chips (set the rest aside). Scoop mixture into prepared muffin pans.
Place muffins tins in the oven for 10 minutes.  After 10 minutes, remove muffins from the oven (but don’t shut oven off), and distribute the other half of the chocolate chips on top of each muffin.
Place  the muffins back into the oven and bake for an additional 2-5 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. *Note, you could skip this step by putting all of the chips in the batter, and baking the muffins for 12-15 min straight, but this method gives the muffins the traditional ‘VitaTop Muffin’ look with the chocolate chips on top!Cool muffins before removing from pan. ENJOY!!!
Servings: 12 Big Muffins or 24 Smaller Muffins
Calories: 116 Calories Per Muffin or 58 Calories Per Muffin -- however if you use real sugar it comes to about 164 per muffin when making 12 depending on which chips you use--

Monday, May 21, 2012

Quinoa black bean soup

a nice different way to have a quinoa and black bean recipe! I found this online, but changed it slightly. For a spicier version you can increase the spices using the larger amount--but I need it to be less spicey for my rosacea . And you may want to increase them slowly. I mixed the left overs with some chili and it was GREAT  ON PASTA!


2/3 cups dry quinoa, rinsed well (if you don't have the pre-rinsed kind)
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 small onion
4 cloves garlic
6 oz. fresh baby spinach or some frozen
3 carrots (sweet potatoes would also be good in this!)
15 oz. can diced tomatoes
4-6 cups vegetable broth (I made my own , see below)
-If pressed for time buy veg broth
1-2 tsp. cumin
1-2 tsp. oregano
1 -2tsp. chili powder
Cilantro for topping
Salt and pepper as desired

save time by buying your vegetable broth
For my vegetable broth: I just threw in some cabbage leaves, carrots,
 2 celery stalks, parsley and a 
green onion, and a few slices of purple onion.
 Cooked about 40 minutes and then threw out the veggies
and kept the broth (actually I did save the carrots for the soup)

Cook quinoa in a small saucepan according to package directions.
Meanwhile, dice onion and carrot. Mince garlic and roughly chop spinach.
In a stockpot over med-high heat, saute onion, carrot, and garlic with cumin, 
chili powder, oregano and salt for about 7 minutes.
Add vegetable broth, , and tomatoes with juice. Cover and bring to a light simmer.
Reduce heat to med-low, add cooked quinoa, spinach, and black beans.
 Let heat through for about 5-10 minutes. Season well with salt.
Serve topped with chopped cilantro.

Ps. If you prefer to try the original recipe it is here:
she adds extra water , beans, quinoa and more of the spices

NOTE--the quinoa tends to absorb the liquid the longer it sits so you may want to add more water

protocolo a very nice Spanish wine with a bit of a kick

We both enjoyed this Spanish red wine.. is vibrant and has deep rich tones with a kick

Monday, May 14, 2012

chocolate strawberry avocado pudding

· ;;

TThis was fantastic!! I found the idea here: serves 4 In the online recipe she used raspberries however it is easier to do it with strawberries because you don't have to strain out the seeds!! THIS IS SOOOOO gooooooD!!!

   1     one cup frozen strawberries (I may have used a bit more)
·          1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice – use Meyer lemons if you can
·          1-2 tablespoons filtered water
·         2 ripe avocados, remove skin and pit, quarter
·         ¼ - ½ cup raw honey (I use local raw clover creamed)
·        ¼ cup raw cacao powder (I use Divine Organics)
·        1 teaspoon gluten-free vanilla extract (I use Simply Organic

Place strawberries in food processor--blend well then add all the rest of the ingredients. Blend well and serve immediately because you used frozen fruit it is already cold and creamy. If you don't use frozen fruit you have to refrigerate a few hours. I toped mine with a bit of strawberries

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Carolina Japanese style rice

We went to the farmer's market this weekend. This made us decide to cook up a nice veggie dish. We used some aromatic Carolina rice as well!

1 and 1/2 cup of dry uncooked Carolina white rice (or the kind you have on hand)
1 radish
1 small fresh garlic head
2 fresh green onions including the green part
8 cabbage leaves
2 small zucchini squash
2 small carrots
1/3 of a red pepper
2 fresh eggs
1/4 cup (approximately) of Braggs Amino (soy sauce can be substituted)
a bit of olive oil

Cook the rice as per the directions on the bag.  Chop up all the veggies. Saute the veggies in non stick pan or wok. Add the  2 eggs and  to the pan scrambling them up with the veggies and then add  the soy sauce--mixing well..  add the rice and stir until nicely combined and serve

Fava beans with garlic, onions and potato

 Love this!!

Fava beans
garlic bulb (head) and if fresh the green part that is attached
fresh green onions with greens
one small red potato chopped
olive oil
salt and pepper

Take beans out of the pod. Parboil for 3 minutes and cool quickly in ice water. Peel off the outer shell of the bean. Saute the red potato till brown (if you have this chopped really small it takes only 4 minutes or so). Add the chopped garlic head and green part, and the onions. Saute till these start getting tender--3 minutes or more depending on the heat. Add the fava beans and cook about 3-4 minutes. Serve with salt and pepper.

French toast in a mug (1 minute!) Fantastic


I used a gluten free roll for this and it came out delicious.

1 Large roll or 2 slices of bread (chopped in 1 inch squares)
1 egg
1-2 tab of almond milk (or whatever)
maple syrup

Place the cut up bread in a large mug.  Mix the egg and milk and pour over the bread. Sprinkle with cinnamon. Microwave for 1 minute.  Usually takes 1 minute and 20 seconds.Check to see if egg is done. If not continue for 10 to 20 seconds until done. Pour strawberries and syrup over it.

Friday, May 11, 2012

orange-cranberry braised cabbage from Southern living

This is a nice treat to have for cabbage!! I think I will have some sweet potatoes to go with it too.

Makes 6 servings. Hands on time 30 min (I did half of the recipe but I am giving the full one here)

1 medium head cabbage shredded or chopped
3 tbsp olive oil
one 6 oz package sweetened dried cranberries
1 tsp orange zest
3/4 cup orange juice
1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp honey (I may have used more)
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg if desired
3 tbsp butter if desired

Cook cabbage in hot oil in a dutch oven over med high heat, stirring constantly 5 min or until tender (I had bigger chunks so took longer).  Stir in cranberries and next 7 ingredients. Cook, stirring often, 6-7 min or until liquid is reduced by half. Remove from heat and stir in butter if using.

Fossi--a nice smooth Chianti

 There are not a whole lot of Chianti brands that I enjoy. But this is a nice smooth one from Italy.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

vegetable alfredo (with pasta GF)

 This was delicious and I think it will be one of our favorite dishes. The veggies are baked in the oven.


1 cup of chopped cauliflower
1 cup or so of chopped broccoli
1 zucchini squash chopped
1 red bell pepper chopped
1 yellow  bell pepper chopped
1 large eggplant peeled and chopped
one rounded teaspoon of minced garlic
oregano (dried)
basil (dried)
sea salt
olive oil
balsamic vinegar
a jar of classico light creamy Alfredo
Bow tie pasta or the  curly type pasta as in photo (I used a corn pasta which is great!! for my GF)

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Line a baking sheet with foil that has been sprayed with pam or something. Place all chopped veggies on pan. Drizzle olive oil and balsamic vinegar over the veggies. Sprinkle with sea salt, oregano basil and garlic.  Bake for 20 minutes and then stir every thing up. Bake another 20-25 minutes until veggies are done but still crisp. Mix with pasta and drizzle with alfredo sauce. DELICIOUS!!

outback style baked potatoes

I love Outback baked potatoes!! So here is  a recipe that mimics their potato. --a very nice salty crusty skin and fluffy on the inside.

Large baking potato (as many as you want)
butter (I may try some oil next time)
Sea salt (the large crystal kind)

Preheat oven to 425 F. Clean potatoes. Prick with fork. Rub with butter and sprinkle with the special salt. Cook for about 1 hour (I placed mine on a foil lined air bake sheet) depending on the sizes of your potato (one of mine was done at 50 minutes and the other at 60 minutes. I had to go out so when they were done I reduced the heat to 175 or so degrees and left them there.

 I like Outback's honey mustard sauce on my potatoes which comes with one of their chicken dishes. I had some Ann's (not sure how this is spelled with or without an E!) salad dressing that was a honey mustard and I used that---but you can serve it any way you desire!!!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Eastern bean salad found on pinterest

Delicious bean salad from

1 can (15 oz.) black beans, rinsed well and drained
1 can (15 oz.) garbanzo beans, rinsed well and drained
1 cup chopped green onion (or less)
1 1/2 cup chopped fresh tomato (about 6 small tomatoes)
1 cup finely chopped fresh parsley

Dressing Ingredients:
3 T fresh-squeezed lemon juice
1/2 tsp. garlic puree (or use finely minced fresh garlic)
4 T extra-virgin olive oil (I used less)
1/2 tsp. salt
fresh ground black pepper to taste

One at a time, empty canned beans into a colander placed in the sink, rinse well with cold water until no more foam appears, then let beans drain well. (I sometimes blot them dry with a paper towel if they still seem wet.) Put well-drained beans into a plastic bowl.

While beans drain, chop green onions, tomatoes, and parsley and add to bowl. Whisk together dressing ingredients. Gently mix dressing into bean mixture, stirring just enough to combine and coat the ingredients with dressing. Let salad sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before servings, then season with more salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste.